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Quarantine in Maryland

Updated: Apr 26, 2020

All we know is our own craving for safety

Dear friends,

My little introverted life is not so very different now, yet it feels that everything has changed. Because it has. After a week of spending way too much time returning again and again to the latest statistics, I'm ready to be more intentional about my time. Spring is here! This most generous time of growth--let it inspire all of us.

I'm fortunate to live just a couple of miles from the Patapsco State Park, and have been taking morning hikes down to the river. Here it was on March 17, oblivious to the news. I've been listening to a Pema Chodron talk on learning to stay in the middle of the river, letting life's flow carry you, rather than trying to cling to the shore.

Yesterday my son and I took a walk on the Herbert Run Greenway at UMBC.

Spring beauties were everywhere. 

The Greenway has a number of old trees, older than those in the state park.

The park is full of young beeches, their marcescent leaves giving the forest a winter confetti, but here I found a much older beech.

I've become more aware of beeches since reading C.D. Wright's posthumous book, Casting Deep Shade. Wonderful trees, wonderful book.

I just thought this was wierd and cool. You can see the different layers of earth--why is the water carving a channel here?

I have been meditating daily since October 1, 2019. It has really helped through this time. Sometimes I listen to a guided meditation; often I just sit for 5, 10, 15, or 20 minutes. An organization I really like has started offering a daily livestream at 3 pm for anyone, anywhere. And now we are a world community, aren't we, realizing we all share the same fears? Here is the link--some very experienced and wise meditation teachers are guiding the 5 minutes sessions and then answering questions:

I began teaching a monthly poetry writing workshop at Yellow Arrow House March 7 (oh, the good old days) and had a lovely group of people and a productive session. April's class will be taught via Zoom, Saturday April 4 from 10-12. We will examine poems that use nature as metaphor, and will find ways to turn our own observations of spring and of human life in poetry. The class will be limited to 8 people. Yellow Arrow is a new center for writers in Baltimore, and like all arts organizations, needs our support now. Please join us!

In the words of a recent student:

Poetry? I hadn't thought about it much since school days. That is, until I took Ann Quinn's class. And then, the world changed. I was suddenly looking at the world differently, with everything from the simple to the complex, ordinary to extraordinary, as a potential poetry topic, using tools and techniques learned in the class. And the additional joy was sharing our writing assignments in class, each of us with a unique approach based on our life experiences, enhanced by Ann's thoughtful comments and guidance.

All my classes welcome new writers but will also be valuable for experienced writers. I hope you can join me on this journey.

May you be well. May you be happy. May you be free from suffering. May you be filled with lovingkindness. May you be filled with joy. May you be at peace and at ease.

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